Hotel 72 the last hit, p.1
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       Hotel 72: The Last Hit, p.1

           Anthony Ivins
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Hotel 72: The Last Hit
Hotel 72

  The Last Hit


  Anthony Ivins

  Copyright © 2017 Anthony Ivins

  No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, or by any information storage and retrieval system without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of very brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law.

  This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

  The plane jerked to the side as its wheels touched the ground. All the passengers lurched forward and were then thrown backwards as the plane suddenly braked, sending a trail of smoke high into the air behind it. The plane slowed down and taxied normally across the runway to its parking place.

  Robert could hear the huge sighs of relief from the passengers around him as the seatbelt light went out, and they were allowed to stand and gather their belongings stored in the overhead compartments. The usual speech from the air hostess was blurting out of the PA system as Robert opened the compartment above him and removed his rucksack, placing it over his left shoulder.

  He took his mobile phone out of his pocket and switched it on, seeing the little white apple on the screen before it powered up. He entered his eight-digit passcode and waited for the phone to register on the network. After a few seconds the phone successfully registered on AT&T and almost at once the first message notification came through the Wickr app.

  There was no name, just a number. Robert opened the message and read the contents:

  “Hotel 72, Room 710."

  He deleted the message at once and put the phone back into his pocket. By this stage, the people in front of him were starting to disembark and Robert joined the queue. It was a lengthy walk from their stop to the carousel where he waited to collect his luggage. He looked at his watch. It was 5-05pm.

  Robert waited patiently as his bag was the last to come out. He was sure that the airlines had a personal vendetta against him as his luggage always seemed to come out last. He shrugged it off, picked up his bag and walked towards the exit. The rain was pouring down and Robert lifted his collar around his neck as he stepped outside, looking for a cab. Normally he would take an Uber but he was on business and did not want to leave any tracks.

  Before he hailed a cab he pulled out a cigarette and lit it, taking a few deep breaths. The nicotine boost calmed him down. He took a few more deep puffs before flicking the butt into a large puddle and holding up his hand for a taxi. It took a few seconds for a cab to pull up and he opened the back door and jumped inside.

  “Where to?” asked the cab driver.

  “Hotel 72,” replied Robert, “Do you know it?”

  “Yes Sir,” said the cab driver.

  “Okay good, let’s go,” said Robert, and he leaned back in his seat and looked out as they drove out of the airport, raindrops streaking the side of the window. He noticed a large sign as they drove past, “Don’t mess with Texas”, and he had a silent laugh to himself.

  The ride from the airport to the hotel was uneventful and took just over twenty minutes. As the cab pulled up outside the hotel the darkness had settled in.

  “Here we go mister, Hotel 72,” said the cab driver.

  Robert looked at the meter and saw the fare was $27-37, he pulled a twenty and a ten dollar note out of his wallet and handed it over to the driver, “Keep the change,” he said as he opened the door and stepped onto the sidewalk.

  The driver sped off, wheels spinning on the wet tarmac. Robert placed his bag down on the ground, pulled out a cigarette and lit it. He looked up at the hotel which was as plain as they come. Then hotel was built like a large rectangle with rows of windows up and down. At the top of the building was a large blue neon sign that flashed “Hotel 72”. Even from the ground Robert could hear the buzz of the electricity as it pulsed through the glass tubes.

  Robert had a look around him. He was trained to notice every little detail and remember it. Robert saw the convention centre opposite, the Starbucks across the street and a beggar sitting against a lamp pole with his head resting on his knees. He opened his wallet, took out a ten dollar note and walked over to the beggar. As he was standing over him the beggar looked up and Robert handed him the note, “Get yourself something warm to eat and drink,” he said and then turned around and waked into the lobby of the hotel.

  He scanned the area as he walked inside. The lobby was small and stuffy. A large sofa and two wingback chairs were squashed in a corner with a coffee table placed in the middle. There was a small doorway which Robert identified as the entrance to the hotel bar, with a small sign above the doorway, “The Tipsy Cow,”

  “What kind of name is that?” he thought to himself as he continued to look around, taking mental notes of everything he saw. He saw that the receptionist behind the check-in counter was staring so he walked over to him.

  “Good evening Sir, welcome to Hotel 72, how can I help you?” chirped the receptionist cheerfully.

  “I believe you have a reservation for me. Name is Anderson. Robert Anderson,” he replied.

  The receptionist started punching away on his keyboard, looking up at the screen every few seconds.

  “Anderson, mm, can’t see it on my arrivals list. Do you have a reservation number sir?” asked the receptionist.

  “Do I look like a fucking Travel Agent,” replied Robert, “look at your system again. I am booked into room 710.”

  A small bead of perspiration ran down the side of the receptionist’s face as he started to hack away at the keyboard.

  “Ah, here we go sir, my apologies. They had your last name as Robert instead of Anderson which is why I didn’t pick it up on my system.”

  The receptionist tapped away a few more times on the keyboard before a piece of paper spat out of the printer. At the same time he cut a key card and placed both items on the counter in front of Robert.

  “Here is your room key sir. Please sign the bottom of the registration card. At the back are all of our terms and conditions,” said the receptionist.

  The receptionist looked at the screen and piped up, “Ah, you have a package Mr Anderson” he said with an enquiring tone.

  “Are you asking me or telling me?” replied Robert sarcastically.

  The receptionist kept his head down and pulled out a large book from behind the counter and started paging through it. When he reached the right page, he used his finger to scan down one of the columns before writing down a number on a piece of paper.

  “Here we go, it’s in the back room. Please give me a minute,” he said.

  Robert stood waiting at the reception desk for a few minutes while he heard the receptionist rummaging in the back office for his package. He continued to add mental notes of the lobby area, seeing who was coming and going and mapping the layout in his head.

  After a few minutes the receptionist arrived back with his parcel, “Here we go Mr. Anderson,” he said as he handed the parcel over the counter to Robert.

  Robert inspected the package, making sure it had not been tampered with. When he was satisfied that it hadn’t, he picked up the Keycard off the counter and turned and walked towards the elevator.

  “Sir, you forgot to sign the registration card,” came the receptionist’s voice from behind.

  Robert stopped and paused, then carried on walking. The receptionist knew that asking a second time would be trouble. He put his head down and p
rocessed Robert’s check-in on the system.

  Robert got into the elevator and pushed the 7th Floor button. The doors closed and the elevator started its journey upwards. Robert looked at his watch when he stepped inside the elevator and then looked at it again when the elevator stopped on his floor. It had taken 24 seconds. He stepped out onto the carpet and looked along the long and narrow passage.

  The first thing that caught his eye were the two CCTV cameras positioned above the elevators. One was looking straight down the passage and the other pointing to the entrance of the elevator. He walked slowly down the passage, counting his steps until he reached his room door. Robert slid the key card into the lock of the door and the small LED flashed green. He pulled the card out again and heard a small click as the door unlocked and he pulled down the handle and went inside the room.

  Robert looked around the room for anything that looked out of place but everything seemed to fit. It looked just like any other hotel room. The bed was a queen with a large wooden headboard with two side tables, one on either side. Opposite the bed was a wooden cabinet with a television on top. Close to the large single window was a lounger chair and a coffee table. To the right of the TV stand was a small wooden desk with a kettle and some coffee and tea sachets stuffed into a cup.

  Robert switched on the bathroom light and went inside. There wasn't a shower, only a bath that had a separate
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